Do the dean shuffle

Meredith Woo. Photo: UVA Media Relations. Meredith Woo. Photo: UVA Media Relations.

UVA’s longest-serving dean of admissions, John Blackburn, recently announced that he will retire in June 2009, and that announcement capped a semester of top-level shuffling at UVA. The administrative face of the University is changing. Blackburn’s been at the helm since 1985. President John Casteen and Executive Vice President and COO Leonard Sandridge both have been making informal plans for their retirements. Casteen is expected to step down after the Capital Campaign ends in 2011. Sandridge? Well, he already has a street named after him, so he’s liable to go at any time. Here is a list of UVA big-wigs that have left for other opportunities and who replaced them.—Scott Weaver

Meredith Jung-En Woo

Arts & Science Dean
Who’s out: Ed Ayers
Why: Left to become president at University of Richmond
Who’s in: Meredith Jung-En Woo
Poached from: University of Michigan
Way back in 2006, former Arts & Science dean (and popular American history professor) Ayers said that he was leaving for the University of Richmond. Seventeen months and two searches later, UVA announced that Woo would take over on June 1. Karen Ryan stepped into the breach as interim dean for 10 months.

 Steven DeKosky

Med School Dean
Who’s out: Sharon Hostler
Why: Served as interim dean since 2007
Who’s in: Steven DeKosky
Poached from: University of Pittsburgh
The most recent appointee, DeKosky will become vice president and dean of the School of Medicine on August 1. And he should be familiar with UVA. DeKosky completed a post-doc fellowship in UVA’s Department of Neurology. His first academic gig also came in that department.

Dorrie Fontaine

Nursing School Dean
Who’s out: Jeanette Lancaster
Why: Retiring after 19 years as dean
Who’s in: Dorrie Fontaine
Poached from: University of California-San Francisco
Fontaine will take over for Lancaster come August 1. And it won’t be easy. Lancaster headed the school for nearly two decades. In 2006, she was named a finalist for the “100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare,” a survey sponsored by Modern Healthcare Magazine. Oh, and UVA named a street after her.

Paul Mahoney

Law School Dean
Who’s out: John Jeffries
Why: Wants to get back to first love—the classroom
Who’s in: Paul Mahoney
Poached from: UVA
Mahoney starts his run as dean on July 1. His predecessor, Jeffries, will take a year-long sabbatical and then return to teach at the Law School. Mahoney joined the UVA Law School faculty in 1990 and is an expert in corporate law. He serves as academic associate dean from 1999 to 2004.

Thomas Skalak

VP of Research
Who’s out: Ariel Gomez
Who’s in: Thomas Skalak
Poached from: UVA
On August 1, Skalak, professor and chairman of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, will take over as vice president of research. Gomez has held the post since 2003.


Batten School of Leadership Dean
Who’s in: Unfilled
Thanks to a $100 million gift by Frank Batten, UVA has just created its newest school since Darden was established 53 years ago. As the school has been recently willed into existence, the search for a dean has been on.

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